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Who repeats? A follow-up study of state hospital patients' firesetting behavior
Systems and Psychosocial Advances Research Center Publications and Presentations
  • Jeffrey L. Geller, University of Massachusetts Medical School
  • William H. Fisher, University of Massachusetts Medical School
  • Gregory Bertsch, Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic
UMMS Affiliation
Department of Psychiatry
Publication Date
Document Type
Female; Firesetting Behavior; Follow-Up Studies; Hospitals, State; Humans; Male; Mental Disorders; Middle Aged; Patient Admission; Prevalence; Psychiatric Status Rating Scales
The authors report on a population of psychiatric patients who were studied over a 6.75 year period to determine the occurrences of firesetting behavior noted in their psychiatric inpatient records. Two groups of 50 patients each were drawn from an earlier study and were matched by sex, age, and diagnoses. One group of patients had prior firesetting behavior; the other did not. Firesetting behavior was found not only in patients originally identified as having previously engaged in this behavior, but also in those with no documented history of this act prior to the period of the study. Patients having firesetting behavior in their past psychiatric record set more actual fires. Total number of episodes of firesetting behavior, however, was not significantly different between the two groups. Results are discussed in terms of the communicative function of firesetting and the dilemma of clinical prediction.
Psychiatr Q. 1992 Summer;63(2):143-57.
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Link to Article in PubMed
PubMed ID
Citation Information
Jeffrey L. Geller, William H. Fisher and Gregory Bertsch. "Who repeats? A follow-up study of state hospital patients' firesetting behavior" Vol. 63 Iss. 2 (1992) ISSN: 0033-2720 (Linking)
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